Simiran Lalvani

Research Student

Simiran is a doctoral candidate in International Development and a recipient of the Felix Scholarship. Her proposed doctoral project examines foodwork – discovery, production, delivery, and consumption of food and its entanglements with digital technologies in Mumbai, India. Broadly, she is interested in the relationship between informal work, digital technologies and socio-cultural and moral orders. 

Prior to the DPhil, she engaged in qualitative, ethnographic research projects on a freelance basis, briefly worked in qualitative market research and as a lecturer of sociology and anthropology for undergraduate students. She studied the relationship between the digital and social justice at BBC Media Action. At Microsoft Research India, she studied the work of matrimonial matchmakers and astrologers for a future of work study. She examined app-based food delivery work and workers in Mumbai for the ‘Mapping Digital Labour in India’ study at the Centre for Internet and Society. 

In March 2020, she received a scholarship from the Friedrich Ebert Foundation and Trade Union Solidarity Centre of Finland (SASK) to participate in the Global Labour University (GLU) run ‘Union Rights, Policy and Practice: Training for Global Union Activists’ at the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg. The course was eventually stalled due to covid-19. 

She has a Masters in Development and Labour Studies from the Centre for Informal Sector and Labour Studies (CISLS), Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi and a Bachelors in Economics and Sociology from St Xavier’s College (Autonomous), Mumbai. 


In the media
Producing Material and Consuming Immaterial Diets: A socio-historical study of food delivery work...

Journal articles and special issues

Lalvani, Simiran (with N Raval and S Lalvani) (2022) 'Moral Economy of the Platform Work', Asiascapes: Digital Asia 9 (1-2) 144-74
Lalvani, Simiran (with J Pal) (2022) 'The Moral Orders of Matchmaking Work: Digitization of Matrimonial Services and the Future of Work', Proc. ACM Hum.-Comput. Interact. 6, CSCW1, Article 121
Lalvani, Simiran (with Drupa Dinnie Charles, Azhagu Meena, Syeda Zainab Akbar, Divya Siddharth, and Joyojeet Pal) (2020) 'Performing Gender, Doing Politics: Social Media and Women Election Workers in Kerala and Tamil Nadu', Proceedings of the 2020 International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development ICTD 2020 Association for Computing Machinery, New York


Lalvani, Simiran (forthcoming) 'Sexual contracts of app-based food delivery: An examination of social reproduction through feeding and being fed in Mumbai, India'. In M. Altenried, J. Dück and M. Wallis (eds) Platform Capitalism and the Crisis of Social Reproduction , Verlag Westfälisches Dampfboot
Lalvani, Simiran (forthcoming) 'Khanavals and Dabbas: Examining Women's Work through Food in a Changing Bombay'. In Abidha Dhumatkar (ed) Gender in Indian History
Lalvani, Simiran (2022) 'Delivering the night time economy home: Nocturnal Labour and Temporalities of Platform Work'. In Ger Duijzings, Lucie Dušková (eds) Working at Night: modernity, night shifts and the temporal organization of labour across political and economic regimes , De Gruyter Oldenbourg
Lalvani, Simiran (with S Lalvani ) (2021) 'Sexual Contracts of App-based Food delivery Work: an examination of social reproduction through feeding and being fed in Mumbai, India'. In Moritz Altenried, Julia Dück, Mira Wallis (eds) Platform Capitalism and Social Reproduction , Verlag Westfälisches Dampfboot and Rosa Luxemburg Stifung

Other publications

Lalvani, Simiran (with A Gupta, S Zia) (2022) 'Audioscapes of the Platform Economy', Anthropology News
Lalvani, Simiran (with A Gupta) (2021) 'What happens in a platform office?', Futures of Work
Lalvani, Simiran (with S Santosh) (2020) 'Viral Care: Spectacles of Care as a Substitute for Workers’ Rights', Solidarity and Care blog by The Sociological Review.
Lalvani, Simiran (2019) 'Workers’ fictive kinship in Mumbai app-based delivery', Platypus: The CASTAC blog of the American Anthropological Association
Lalvani, Simiran (2019) 'The Offline as a Place of Work: Examining Food Discovery and Delivery by Digital Platforms', Centre for Internet and Society’s Researchers@Work Blog.
12 Apr, 2020
'The Personal and Social Risks That India's Food Delivery Workers Are Taking During COVID-19'. DPhil Simiran Lalvani co-authors article for the Wire
Research interests:

informality, labour, digital cultures, platform economy, food, social reproduction, conviviality, commensality, exclusion